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Jazz Articles

INTERVIEWS

Carla Bley: Shoe Leather, Mystery & Moxie

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With the passing of time. That's roughly how the title of Carla Bley's second trio album for ECM translates. Bley turned eighty a few months before the release of Andando el Tiempo but the passing years, if anything, have sharpened her composer's claws and whetted her playing appetite, judging by the music on this, her third collaboration with Steve Swallow and Andy Sheppard following the live album Songs With Legs (Watt, 1994) and Trios (ECM, 2013). While most ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Sara Gazarek and Josh Nelson: Dream In The Blue

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The success of a story often hinges on the art of the telling. Listen to vocalist Sara Gazarek with pianist Josh Nelson and you immediately see that to be true. These two use ripples of inflection to elicit tidal waves of emotion, uncover new wrinkles in the oldest of thematic fabrics, paint scenes and/or inhabit characters so deeply and convincingly that they blur or erase the lines separating true self from role, and willingly reveal all that this world has ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Igor Osypov Quartet: Dream Delivery

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Igor Osypov's debut album, I (Unit Records, 2015), was quite promising in many ways. Yet, it was a snapshot of an artist still in the formative stages of the craft. Thus, the content of the Berlin-based plectrist's Dream Delivery came as a pleasant shock. Seemingly, within the past year, Osypov has taken prodigious strides towards staking out a unique personal sound. Wielding a semi-hollow body electric, Osypov defaults to a clean tone and a notably percussive attack while mixing in ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Alfonso Calvo Septet: Sea Ahead

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From the burgeoning and prolific Spanish jazz scene comes another quality production on the progressive Free Code label, based out of Galicia. Continuing this musical momentum is local bassist Alfonso Calvo, who formed a septet to showcase his compositional and leadership skills on Sea Ahead. Calvo was motivated from his recent association with Marcos Pin's “Broken Artist," and expands upon the septet foundation with a sophisticated realization. He recorded in a quartet format in 2014, releasing “No Name," with the ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Eric Bibb: The Happiest Man In The World

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Like his mentor Taj Mahal, Eric Bibb plays and sings acoustic country blues in praise of the simple things in life. He doesn't go in for flashy solos or what used to be called “the old moody." His career spans five decades and this is 36th album. In “Prison of Time," the best, most heartfelt song on it, he sings: “One day becomes another / So quickly, I'm left behind." His songs are superbly well crafted and ...

IN THE STUDIO

Leonieke Scheuble's Journey Into The Art Of Jazz

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The setting is a living room in a suburban northern New Jersey home. For the most part, it's filled with things not necessarily available at the furniture outlets that line the local highways. An upright piano takes up most of the wall adjacent to the front door. A harpsichord spans the area between the entrances to the kitchen and the dining room. A comfortable sofa is placed between a Hammond B-3 organ and a Leslie speaker. It is clearly a ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Chris Cain: King of the Blues

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Presumably, the title of singer / guitarist Chris Cain's new CD, King of the Blues, refers not to Cain himself but to one of his idols, the legendary bluesman B.B. King, who passed away in May 2015. Cain, who was born and raised in San Jose, CA, attended his first B.B. King concert at age three, and among the album's nine tracks are a pair written by King, “Whole Lotta Lovin'" and “So Excited." Cain composed four others to complement ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Myriad3: Moons

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Myriad3's third release, Moons follows very much in the vein of their first two, Tell (Alma Records, 2012) and The Where (Alma Records, 2014), yet there are subtle differences both in instrumentation and their approach to their material. In short, a lot of growth is evident when one compares Moons to its predecessors. Tell, recorded a scant 2 years after the trio's formation, is essentially a virtuosic acoustic jazz album: three young cats flexing their well-developed chops. The thing that ...


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